Pam Bondi Can’t Believe New York AG Letitia James. Just Can’t Believe Her At All!
New York Attorney General Letitia James put the smack down last week on the NRA, and conservatives immediately accused her of waging war against the Second Amendment, which grants Americans the not-so-well-regulated right to wage war on each other. The NRA is a shockingly corrupt organization that's allegedly violated multiple laws governing public charities. It couldn't even settle for shamelessly promoting the sale of death machines that kill tens of thousands of people each year.
Pam Bondi, former GOP attorney general of Florida, has some experience with shockingly corrupt organizations. In 2013, she was considering teaming up with New York to investigate the Florida operations of Donald Trump's self-titled “university." The Trump Foundation, which was also a big scam, coincidentally donated $25,000 to Bondi's re-election campaign, and Bondi came to the unrelated conclusion that Trump University was completely legitimate. She was either bribed (allegedly!) or bad at law, or she's just, you know, craven.
Friday, on Sean Hannity's show, guest host and former House Rep. Jason Chaffetz brought on Bondi and the Trump campaign's legal adviser, Jenna Ellis, to lecture James about ethics and responsible lawyering.
“Flags in the background” https://t.co/HCjAqq1fy6— Acyn (@Acyn)1596851190.0
First Chaffetz tried to connect Joe Biden's recent comments about taking on the NRA with James's lawsuit, which are unrelated events. Chaffetz also noted that Biden had promised to put “Beto O'Rourke — Robert Francis O'Rourke — in charge of gun policy." It's unclear why O'Rourke's full name makes him more of a threat against the Second Amendment.
Republicans are desperate to make this election about anything but COVID-19, so Chaffetz insists the Second Amendment itself is at stake if Biden wins. If you have an endless supply of free time and patience, you could try to explain to your Fox News-binging Nana that dissolving the NRA because it's crooked won't repeal the Second Amendment. Conservatives, after all, were the ones insisting women could still get pap smears and HPV tests if Planned Parenthood was defunded.
BONDI: When [James] was running for office, she made it very clear she was gunning after Donald Trump.
Yes, because when you're running for attorney general, it's not unreasonable to mention the major crimes you plan to prosecute, and President “Law & Order" appears to have committed quite a few of them.
But what does this have to do with America's favorite penis substitutes?
BONDI: [Trump] was in her sights! She said she had her eyes on Trump Tower.
Where all the crimes took place, including possible collusion with Russia to “win" the 2016 election.
BONDI: She's continued to go after Eric Trump and Don Trump, Jr. and their businesses.
Lady, will you talk about the guns already!
BONDI: So, her doing this now isn't a surprise.
No, it's not a surprise James would pursue criminal activity. New York has very tough laws against scuzzy charities and the Trump family was involved in one of the scuzziest, which is why a sitting president had to pay more than $2 million in court-ordered damages to eight different charities for "illegally misusing charitable funds at the Trump Foundation for political purposes."
Bondi boasted about her own experience apparently not prosecuting crimes. That doesn't seem like the sort of thing a former attorney general would want highlighted on their LinkedIn profile.
BONDI: Being a chief legal officer and chief law enforcement officer, as I was for the third largest state and she is of the fourth largest state in the country, it's a tremendous responsibility. She sees it as tremendous power.
Bondi lamented that James would file a "161-page lawsuit, going after the NRA when New York is in a time of crisis." There's no compelling medical evidence that letting the NRA freely grift would help flatten the COVID-19 curve. We keep telling Republicans: You can't shoot the coronavirus. Look, I hate guns, but if assault rifles were more effective against COVID-19 than masks, I'd probably support going easy on the NRA for the next year or so, but that's not reality. So fuck the NRA.
BONDI: Saying she wants to dissolve the NRA is even more unheard of!
An attorney general dissolving corrupt nonprofits is not “unheard of." Bondi is trying to equate the NRA with gun rights in general, but no one's stopping anyone from starting a separate "Gun Nuts R Us" organization that doesn't break New York state law.
BONDI: She said out loud that this wasn't political. She holds a grand press conference with flags in the background.
Wait, I thought flags weren't political but something all Americans could unite behind. Aren't we supposed to have flags everywhere? That's how people know you're not a communist. It's also a preventative measure Black people take to keep Navy SEAL dogs from attacking them.
BONDI: [James] talks about the NRA, talks about the Second Amendment, and if you're a business right now in New York and your doors are closing, you're a consumer and your AG put a press conference, which could've been prioritized later, over you, the consumer.
The New York attorney general is not responsible for job creation. Her press conference and lawsuit against the NRA isn't why Broadway is dark for the rest of the year. Conservatives want people locked up for breaking windows at a protest, but when white people — especially GOP supporters — commit "white-collar" crimes, then we should all just press pause on “Law & Order" until the economy improves. That's as insulting and racist as the NRA itself.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."